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Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope (Black)
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- Quick and easy no-tool setup
- Slow motion controls for smooth tracking
- Erect image optics - Ideal for terrestrial and astronomical use
- Fully coated glass optical components with high transmission coatings for enhanced image brightness and clarity
- 3x Barlow lens triples the magnifying power of each eyepiece
- Accessory tray for convenient storage of accessories
- BONUS Astronomy Software download with a 10,000 object database, printable sky maps and 75 enhanced images
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Celestron PowerSeeker telescopes are a great way to open up the wonders of the Universe to the aspiring astronomer. The PowerSeeker series is designed to give the first-time telescope user the perfect combination of quality, value, features and power. Amateur astronomy is a great family hobby that can be enjoyed year round, and Celestron’s PowerSeekers are the ideal choice for an affordable and high quality telescope that will provide many hours of enjoyment for the entire family. PowerSeekers are quick and easy to set up – even for the novice. No tools are required for assembly! Their sturdy equatorial mounts are perfect for tracking objects in the night sky, and the collapsible alt-azimuth mounts are perfectly suited for terrestrial (land) viewing as well as astronomical use. All of Celestron’s PowerSeekers include a full range of eyepieces plus a 3x Barlow lens that provides an increase in viewing power hundreds of times greater than that of the unaided eye! PowerSeekers are designed and manufactured using all fully coated glass optical components with high transmission coatings for enhanced image brightness and clarity. Erect Image Optics are ideal for terretrial (land) and astronomical (sky) use.
Celestron's value priced PowerSeeker 70AZ is an affordable entry level telescope with some nice extras like a correct image prism and "The Sky" astronomy software included. The package also includes an Alt-Azimuth mount with adjustable aluminum tripod, high and low power eyepieces, a 3X barlow lens, and a 5 power cross hair finder scope.
The PowerSeeker 70AZ comes disassembled in a compact box, but the fully illustrated quick set-up guide makes it easy to assemble. Go ahead and try it out in the daytime, that's the best time to align the finder scope while looking at a distant tree or telephone pole.
The optics of the PowerSeeker 70AZ are surprisingly good, especially when I use the low power 20mm eyepiece. The correct image prism and the 20mm eyepiece give me a magnification of 35X, so backyard birds seem five times closer than with my seven power binoculars. The PowerSeeker 70 can be upgraded with standard 1.25 inch telescope eyepieces. A 25mm plossl eyepiece for example gives a true field of view of almost 2 degrees for delightful views of star clusters like the Pleiades, while a 6mm eyepiece provides a magnification of 117X, just right to see the rings of Saturn or the cloud bands on Jupiter. The included 4mm eyepiece (175X magnification) might be too much power: I can see Saturn's rings but at 175X it's not easy to focus and it's not easy to keep planets centered in the field of view.
The Alt-Azimuth mount included with the PowerSeeker 70AZ is lighter and easier to use than an Equatorial mount, but it does not track stars and planets. As soon as you get the Moon centered in the eyepiece it starts drifting toward the edge, this is caused by rotation of the Earth. The Moon may stay in the low power eyepiece for two or three minutes, but with the high power 4mm eyepiece (175X magnification) a star will disappear in only twenty or thirty seconds.
Celestron's PowerSeeker 70AZ is a real value because it has very good achromatic optics in a package that's light, portable and affordable. The drawback is that it has a lot of plastic parts, including the finder scope and the 3X barlow. For a more rugged alternative, take a look at Celestron‘s AstroMaster 70 AZ which comes with better eyepieces and includes a sturdier Alt-Azimuth mount. --Jeff Phillips
- Very good optics
- Correct image prism
- Easy no tool set-up
- Light, portable, and affordable
- Light weight tripod
- Does not track stars and planets
- Plastic finder and barlow lens
Moon as seen with the low power eyepiece, 35X
Crater Clavius shot with a Neximage camera, 280X
Planet Saturn shot with Neximage camera, 280X
Deer over 100 yards away shot at 35X
Birdfeeder about 50 feet away shot at 35X
Top customer reviews
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The size of the "L" shape part is 1.25 inches, and it is the part of the scope that you look through that makes all objects turn right side up for looking at mountains, birds, etc... and it makes it very comfortable to view the sky when pointing straight up, but you will need to sit in a chair because that end of the scope is lower and that is even with the tripod fully extended, and it is very comfortable anyway; however, anytime that you are going to use the 3X Barlow lens you will have to take the "L" shape part out and stick that 3x Barlow straight in with the eyepiece in the Barlow, and you will have to sit completely on the ground for that because the eyepiece is 31 inches off of the ground with you having to sit under the scope, and the "L" shape has to come off or you can never get the 20mm or the 5mm to come into focus, and everything will be upside down without the "L" shape, and the finder scope also has everything upside down. You can also take the Barlow out and just place the 20mm eyepiece, or the 5mm eyepiece straight in as well, but again everything will be upside down without the "L" shape part which is called the erect image optics for looking at landscapes.
The Performance was absolutely perfect with a nice crisp circle to a point for a clear and sharp star image with absolutely no coma; for those who do not know what I am talking about the word coma means that the star has funny looking tails on them which means bad eyepieces because it is not a clear crisp point, but like I said these eyepieces that came with this Celestron 70AZ were extremely good, and that was looking at the Star Sirius with the 20mm that is 1.25 inches, 5mm that is 1.25 inches, and then I used the 20mm and the 5mm with the 3X Barlow that is also 1.25 inches and everything performed with an excellence performance. The Moon was full on March 1, 2018 and I live in a very light polluted commercial and residential area, and finding the Orion Nebula was very easy, and the performance of the Celestron 70AZ made every penny worth to see the Orion Nebula with all eyepieces, and yes I even used all eyepieces using the 3X Barlow, and it was difficult when it came time to use the Barlow, but I wanted to put this Telescope to the test and the Orion Nebula was crisp on everything, and I mean very crisp with an excellence performance again! I also put the Telescope through the same tests with the full Moon, and again everything was a clear crisp image, and you just cannot go wrong with that kind of performance for under $90, and remember this Telescope is light so that makes it easy to just grab it and go, but if you want a carrying case you will have to purchase one; however, I am glad Celestron did not include one because that would have increased the price, and I might have backed out of buying it because I really just wanted a low cost telescope with a good performance, and this was a perfect purchase for all I wanted which was something to grab and go outside in my light polluted backyard, and BBQ and see if I could see a few things, and trust me this Celestron PowerSeeker 70 AZ did far better than I thought it would, and that is why I strongly urge those reading this review to not waste your money on going for junk unless you realize you are buying junk and that is what you want to buy; otherwise, stick to this review because I have had an 8 inch telescope, a 10 inch telescope, and a 12 inch telescopes, and I even have had a set of Zhumell Telescope Binoculars, and I have had a Telescope Lab at the University where we got to use many types of telescopes, and the Celestron PowerSeeker70Az is good enough to be one of the telescopes we used in our Lab class, and that is the truth from all my experience.
Using the Astrozap Glass Solar Filter, and getting use to looking at the ground with the Celestron 70AZ pointing at the sun takes some time to get use to what the shadow looks like on the ground when you know you are close to your target, and this is why I recommended to remove the finder scope before giving it to children because it is too tempting to quickly look into it, and always have the end caps on the finder scope even for yourself because it can damage the finder scope very quickly, or just remove it, but always make sure end caps are on tight, and the solar filter is on tight before you even step outside; good habits are a good thing to practice for that one moment you may make a mistake, and that is why I do not even step outside until all is set, capped, and tight, and then I step outside point, and while the telescope is pointing I am looking at the shadow on the ground.
There will be a little shaking going on in a mild wind, but you can take a beach towel and just place it over the telescope close to the end pointing to the sky and that can stop some of the shaking. Some more information is that the power of the Celestron 70 AZ are as such: 20mm has 35X power, 5mm has 105X power, 20mm with 3X Barlow has 105X power, and 5mm with 3x Barlow has 420 power, and remember the higher the power the dimmer the object gets, and the closer you get to the object, and the faster the object will travel out of sight of the edge of the eyepiece; also, it is not so easy to get a small object such as the Orion Nebula at 420X because you have to remove the "L" piece, and then place the 20mm in to find the object, then very carefully take out the 20mm and put it into the Barlow and put the Barlow in and try to find it, and yes it was a beautiful crisp clear image, and of course the Moon was easier, and it was beautiful all the way up to a crater, and when I get to Jupiter and Saturn I will give an update, but I am already wanting a "wide angle" eye piece with a large 40mm 1.25 inch eyepiece because I like seeing seeing all of Pleiades in the eyepiece; therefore, I need a really lower power which means I will back away from power so that the eyepiece can capture more light, and by getting further back with the lower power I get to see much more sky in the eyepiece, and this is fun to just put a very low power eyepiece in and just start wondering around the sky looking around like you would when you are looking at a book instead of your face crammed into the book so close with power that all you see is just one word on the entire page when at a high power. I will update more in the future especially about the planets, and do not forget that Celestron makes accessories such has to hold a digital camera, and also you can get cell phone accessories to place your phone over the eyepiece, and yes there are threads for something on the Celestron Powerseeker 70 AZ and I am not sure what it is for, but I believe you remove the "L" part and screw a camera, or a camera holder or something like that to it, but I absolutely know nothing about taking pictures or using phones with telescopes, but do remember that this telescope can do many more things that will make it even more of a wise investment compared to anything cheaper. I bought the SVBONY 40mm 1.25" Plossl Telescope Eyepiece, and I could see all of Pleiades, but I had to keep my eye exactly in place because the degree is only 40 degrees, but it was nice to see all of Pleiades in the eyepiece. I went to Home Depot and bought two 10 foot lengths of 1 1/4" PVC, and cut lengths at three at 36,"and three at 19", and three at 15," and three at 8,"and I bought nine 1 1/4" PVC couplings, and three 1 1/4" PVC 45 degree couplings to be the feet, and I did not glue anything, and I can get the telescope at many different heights, but it is important to gently lay the telescope down on its side with two of the tripod legs laying on the ground, and slide the PVC on the tripod legs, and then take the third leg, and slide it on, and carefully pull the telescope up into place. Do not just keep the telescope up and start sliding the PVC on the legs because I dropped my telescope right on the sidewalk, and broke it; but I Super-glued it back together, and all is well, but I should have stayed with my original plan and just gently lay the telescope on the ground, and it would have totally removed the possibility of me dropping it in the first place. I will report about Jupiter, and Saturn when the time comes, but I must admit I like a Refracting Telescope better than a Reflector Telescope, and if you get everything that I have listed in this review you are going to love it as well; especially, if you get into the photography aspect of it, and really get your money's worth, but I do not see me investing in that anytime soon; therefore, add a comment to my review if you get to experience the photography aspect of the Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ. Remember to download the free software called Stellarium, and for those who use the Astrozap sun filter I used industrial strength Velcro to Velcro the solar filter on for extra strength, and then when I pulled it forward the whole plastic piece comes off so that you can easily clean your big front lens; therefore, I used Velcro to have that strapped to the main section of the Telescope as well, and now when I pull the Solar Filter forward to see if it can come off it stays completely on. Keep looking up! EYE 5
UPDATE: March 23, 2018 5:55 A.M Corpus Christi, Texas and Jupiter was magnificent with the 20mm eyepiece; you can easily see the bands on the planet even in a light polluted area with one of the street lamps about 40 feet away, and the bands on Jupiter are still easy to see; absolutely beautiful! I went to the 5mm but did not enjoy as much, and I went to the 40mm, and again did not enjoy as much; the 20mm seems to be more fun! Therefore, planet observation with this scope is absolutely beautiful. When I had my 12 inch Zhumell Dobsonian Telescope with 2 inch eyepieces I could actually watch the shadow go across the planet from its moons causing the eclipse; however, the clarity of a "Refracting" telescope just cannot be beat, and of course to see an eclipse on Jupiter will cost you well above $100 dollars for a telescope such as my Zhumell 12 inch did. I honestly stand by this Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70 AZ Telescope with all of my experience and the money that I have spent in the past; after all, I just wanted something less than $100 dollars because I live in a residential and commercial area with a lot of street lights; therefore, I thought maybe I could buy a cheap telescope, and just maybe see a star or two more than I do when I am just staring up, but this telescope passed clean through that! I mean the bands on Jupiter! Fantastic! I will update about the binoculars when they arrive. Still waiting on binoculars seems it will take over a month to arrive, but tonight was April 12, 2018 and at 3:30 A.M. Corpus Christi time I got to see the beautiful Saturn! 20mm eyepiece Saturn appeared the size of a pin head, and could barley make out the gap of dark space between the rings and the planet, but it was pretty, and then I put in the 5mm eyepiece and the size was about the size of a broken off pencil tip that still is on the pencil, and I could easily see the black dark space between the rings, and the beautiful round ball of the planet, and I got to see Mars as well as Jupiter all in this night. So far, I cannot believe this telescope was under $90 dollars because it is a performer by all means. I will give a report on binoculars and give an update on that too when possible. Keep looking up! EYE 5